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FinFET First; Rock ‘n’ Roll ‘n’ Solar Cells; Kilby born (Great Reads 11-8-2013)

Comments(0)Filed under: Cadence, EE Times, EDA tools, EDA companies, Brian Fuller, iPhone, engineers, engineering, finfet advantages, computer processor, EDA vendors, ChipEstimate, computer design, Unhinged.tv, Unhinged, Trip Hawkins, Jack Kilby

III-V FinFET First 

IMEC process development

IMEC, the European research group, claims the world's first 3D compound-semiconductor FinFET to integrate III-V and silicon materials on the same 300mm wafer. According to EE Times' R. Colin Johnson, IMEC's process, if adopted by its partners, aims to continue CMOS scaling at 7nm and below, as well as enable hybrid CMOS-RF and CMOS-optoelectronics.

Johnson writes:

"As silicon devices scale down to atomic-scale limits, they are running out of ways to increase performance and lower power consumption. By integrating higher performance materials with silicon, such as III-V transistor channels that provide higher carrier velocity and higher drive current, these hybrid semiconductors aim to enable continued scaling beyond the capabilities of silicon alone."

Here's the complete story.

Here rocks the sun 

Want to improve the conversion efficiency of your solar cells? Try blasting rock ‘n' roll music next to them.

That's the conclusion of researchers at Queen Mary University of London and Imperial College London. They found that vibrations caused by loud music increase efficiency in solar cells constructed from nanorods by up to 40%. What gives?

Read Richard Wilson's post at Electronics Weekly for the scoop.

Jack Kilby Texas Instruments

Birth of the transistor?

Jack Kilby's parents probably didn't have an inkling when he emerged—and neither did the world!—but Nov. 8, 1923 was a great day for the future of electronics. Kilby played a key role just a few decades later in the invention of the integrated circuit, work he'd share a Nobel Prize with Intel's Robert Noyce.

Check out EDN's piece on Kilby and the anniversary of the great man's birth.

Internet of Things and industry's future 

I ran into Daniel Nenni of SemiWiki at the Semico Research IP Impact event recently and we started chatting on a not-insignificant question: Can the semiconductor industry make money in the Internet of Things?

Look at the chart to the left. This came from Jim Feldhan's presentation at the event. Now it appears like a system for a residential appliance gateway. But these relatively sophisticated items will be a subset of IoT.

Do we think devices with that kind of functionality and the attendant BOM will reach a cost point that will get them to IoT volumes?

Nenni addresses a subset of this question on SemiWiki with his post here

Unhinged (again)

We're back with Episode #4 of Unhinged, our electronics-industry news and amusement show. This time we grab two Samsung engineers and talk about how to design image sensors.

Oh, and Sean gets run over by a truck.

It's all in a day's work. 

The real iPhone breakthrough

Trip Hawkins

I always thought the most compelling break-through of the Apple iPhone was integrating sensors and accelerometers. Trip Hawkins begs to disagree.

The Electronics Arts founder said the breakthrough wasn't sensors and it wasn't touch. It was swipe.

Hawkins (gesturing in picture, right) tells Intel Free Press:

"There's a certain flow you get from a swiping experience that's such a profound breakthrough that every human being on Earth wanted to have one."

Check out the full story here

Top tweets 

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